A new study indicates that pink noise may be the key to separating natural climate variability from climate change that is influenced by human activity.
New to pink noise? It is a random noise in which each octave contains the same amount of energy. Pink noise is found in systems ranging from earthquakes and electronics to biology and starlight. Compared to the more familiar white noise, pink noise has more low frequency components.
Write in the journal Physical examination letters, Yale researcher John Wettlaufer, graduate student Sahil Agarwal and the first author and graduate of Yale Woosok Moon from Stockholm University have discovered that the energy signatures of pink noise on decadal timescales appear in data from historical climatic proxies before and after the industrial revolution.
“A central question in contemporary climate science concerns the relative roles of natural climate variability and anthropogenic forcing – climate change linked to human involvement – which interact in highly non-linear ways over multiple timescales, many of which transcend a typical human life, âsaid Wettlaufer, the AM Bateman professor of geophysics, mathematics and physics at Yale.
“We find that the observed pink noise behavior is intrinsic to Earth’s climatic dynamics, suggesting a range of possible implications, perhaps the most important of which are the ‘resonances’ in which processes couple and amplify. warming, âWettlaufer said.
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